Plans for north-east drive-through coffee shop rejected
An artist’s impression of the planned development
Plans to demolish a former north-east health centre and create a drive-through coffee shop in its place have been rejected by council bosses. Developer West Coast Estates (WCE) partnered with NHS Grampian for the scheme to give the Inverurie Health Centre site a new lease of life with four retail units. One of the buildings would be a Starbucks drive-through and there would also feature 64 parking spaces.
But the application attracted dozens of objections from concerned locals who were against the move. Last month Aberdeenshire Council transport bosses called for the drive-through element of the scheme to be scrapped after raising fears that two pedestrian routes into the Constitution Street development “lie on the path of an HGV reversing into the service area.” Now planning chiefs at the local authority have rejected the idea and said the coffee shop at the site would encourage more motorists to visit.
A document outlining also raised safety concerns over “conflicts” between pedestrians and delivery vehicles visiting the site. It also said the developer had not answered concerns raised by transport bosses previously.
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The report said: “A key element of the proposal is a drive-through facility which implies that the private car would be the predominant way in which the site would be accessed and used and the excessive parking provision will actively encourage greater use of the private car. “In addition, there are safety concerns about conflicts between pedestrians and delivery vehicles and some of the analysis undertaken.
As a result, the applicant has failed to address key concerns through the submitted transport assessment.”
Artist impression showing a revamp of Inverurie’s town centre
It also said the proposal “lacks any sign of creativity” and the vision for the future of the site was “uninspiring.” The report said: “The proposal as submitted lacks any sign of creativity, sense of place and awareness of its context. “Instead, what is proposed is a standard, anywhere, uninspiring and visually unappealing solution to an opportunity site that would be dominated by car parking.”
Documents submitted to planners by WCE and NHS Grampian at the end of last year said the development would provide a boost for Inverurie town centre. The planning statement said: “The proposed development will provide an important addition to the commercial centre of Inverurie. “It will not only provide additional employment and economic benefits but will assist in reinforcing the heart of the town centre in response to more peripheral developments, such as the retail park located east of the railway station.
“It will also provide a new anchor store within the town centre as well as additional complementary small units suitable for a range of businesses.”
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